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  • Gavel to Gavel - Supreme Court Oral Argument Broadcasts

    Oral Argument Banner

    Oral Argument Schedule & Briefs

    May 7 to 11, 2012

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    The following summaries are drawn from briefs and lower court judgments. They are meant to provide a general idea of facts and issues presented in cases, and should not be considered official court documents. Facts and issues presented in these summaries should be checked for accuracy against records and briefs, available from the Court, which provide more specific information.

    Via Satellite: Check with Rick Potrikus WFSU Television (800) 322-WFSU for further satellite information.

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    See the partial list of these systems.

    Watch us on the Web in Flash video at http://wfsu.org/gavel2gavel/
    If you miss a live case, view it from our archive at http://wfsu.org/gavel2gavel/archives/index.html

    Names & phone numbers of attorneys in these cases are available in Acrobat format.

    Questions, comments? publicinformation@flcourts.org


     

    Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments

    Monday, May 7, 2012

    Arrive early. Times & order of appearance are tentative and subject to change with no notice. Cases may be postponed due to exigent circumstances.

    Case

     Time

    Facts & Issues

    Place of Origin

    Vincent J. Puglisi v. State of Florida

    SC11-768

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here

    N/A

    Removed from calendar.

    Palm Beach County

    Pedro Garcia v. David Andonie

    SC11-554

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

    9:00
    Mr. Garcia, the Dade property appraiser, denied an application for a homestead tax exemption sought by the Andonies. The Andonies are foreign nationals in the United States on visas. They sought the tax exemption based on the U.S. citizenship of their three minor children, who were all born in Miami and who all live in the home with their parents. The Andonies challenged Mr. Garcia's decision and a review board granted them the tax exemption. When Mr. Garcia challenged that decision in court, both the trial court and the Third District Court of Appeal ruled for the Andonies.
    Miami-Dade County

     

    Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments

    Tuesday, May 8, 2012

    Arrive early. Times & order of appearance are tentative and subject to change with no notice. Cases may be postponed due to exigent circumstances.

    Case

     Time

    Facts & Issues

    Place of Origin

    Gabriel A. Hernandez v. State of Florida

    SC11-941 | SC11-1357

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

    9:00

    Mr. Hernandez, a native Nicaraguan and lawful permanent resident of the U.S., pled guilty to a drug charge. The judge withheld adjudication of guilt and sentenced him to probation. Mr. Hernandez later tried to have his plea vacated. He argued his attorney had not advised him that a guilty plea would trigger mandatory deportation. The trial court denied his motion. The Third District Court of Appeal upheld that ruling but also asked this Court to decide about the applicability of a 2010 U.S. Supreme Court decision in a similar case out of Kentucky.

    Miami-Dade County

    Leduan Diaz v. State of Florida

    SC11-1281

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

    Approx. 9:40
    Mr. Diaz pled guilty to burglary and assault charges. He later appealed, arguing he had never been advised that a guilty plea would trigger mandatory deportation. The trial court rejected his appeal and the Third District Court of Appeal upheld that ruling. The 3rd DCA also asked this Court to decide about the applicability of a 2010 U.S. Supreme Court decision in a similar case out of Kentucky.
    Miami-Dade County

    Claudia Vergara Castano v. State of Florida

    SC11-1571

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

    Approx. 10:30
    Ms. Castano pled guilty to child neglect when a child wandered away from her home day care center. She was sentenced to one day in jail and three years of probation. She later tried to have the judgment vacated, arguing her attorney had not told her the guilty plea would trigger mandatory deportation. The trial court denied the motion and the Fifth District Court of Appeal upheld that ruling. The 5th DCA also certified conflict with decisions by the Third District Court of Appeal and asked this Court to decide about the applicability of a 2010 U.S. Supreme Court decision in a similar case out of Kentucky.
    Orange County

     

    Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments

    Wednesday, May 9, 2012

    Arrive early. Times & order of appearance are tentative and subject to change with no notice. Cases may be postponed due to exigent circumstances.

    Case

     Time

    Facts & Issues

    Place of Origin

    Troy Merck, Jr. v. State of Florida

    SC10-1830 | SC11-1676

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

    9:00

    Mr. Merck was convicted of the first-degree murder of James Newton, who was fatally stabbed in 1991. Mr. Merck was sentenced to death twice but both sentences were overturned on appeal. In his third sentencing proceeding, the jury voted 9-3 to recommend a death sentence. The trial court condemned him to death a third time and this Court upheld the sentence on direct appeal. Mr. Merck filed a postconviction challenge in the trial court. His motion was denied and this appeal followed.

    Pinellas County

    Michael Wayne Shellito v. State of Florida

    SC10-2043 | SC11-1447

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

    Approx. 9:40
    Mr. Shellito was convicted of the first-degree murder of Sean Hathorne, who was fatally shot in 1994. The jury voted 11-1 to recommend a death sentence and the trial court condemned Mr. Shellito to death. This Court upheld his death sentence on direct appeal. Mr. Shellito filed a postconviction challenge in the trial court. His motion was denied and this appeal followed.
    Duval County

    McKenzie Check Advance v. Wendy Betts

    SC11-514

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

    Approx. 10:30
    Ms. Betts and others who got payday loans from McKenzie Check Advance filed a class-action lawsuit against MCA alleging violations of Florida's consumer protection laws. MCA argued that some of its clients had signed arbitration contracts waiving the right to file class-actions. A trial judge ruled that the waivers could not be enforced because the customers would not be able to afford lawyers on an individual basis. The Fourth District Court of Appeal agreed. MCA argues in this appeal that the U.S. Supreme Court has recently ruled that federal arbitration law preempts state law.
    Palm Beach County

    Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund v. American Educational Enterprises

    SC10-2251

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

    Approx. 11:10
    American Educational Enterprises bought a piece of state property from the governor and Cabinet in their capacity as the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund. American later sued the Board, alleging misrepresentation among other things. The Board counter-sued. During pretrial discovery, American objected to one of the Board's requests for financial documents. The trial court approved the request; the Third District Court of Appeal overturned that ruling; the Board appealed to this Court. Now the parties contest whether the 3rd DCA relied upon the correct standard of review.
    Miami-Dade County

     

    Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments

    Thursday, May 10, 2012

    Arrive early. Times & order of appearance are tentative and subject to change with no notice. Cases may be postponed due to exigent circumstances.

    Case

     Time

    Facts & Issues

    Place of Origin

    Roman Pino v. Bank of New York

    SC11-697

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

    9:00

    After The Bank of New York Mellon began foreclosure proceeding on Mr. Pino's home, Mr. Pino alleged the bank had filed fraudulent documents in that proceeding. The bank voluntarily dismissed the foreclosure proceeding and filed a new foreclosure case five months later. Mr. Pino asked the trial court to strike the bank's voluntary dismissal of the first case, arguing such a move was not permitted as a way to avoid fraud allegations. The trial court denied his motion. The Fourth District Court of Appeal upheld that ruling. The 4th DCA also asked this Court to rule on the trial court's power in such a situation.

    Palm Beach County

    Martin J. McClain v. Jeffery H. Atwater

    SC11-1452

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

    Approx. 9:40
    Mr. McClain, a lawyer appointed to represent a death row inmate appealing his sentence, sought payment from the state for his time and costs. The bill he submitted for investigative services exceeded a limit provided in state law. Mr. McClain sought to have the trial court approve the excess costs. The court denied his motion, ruling that the circumstances were ordinary and consequently did not warrant waiving the payment cap. Mr. McClain appealed that ruling to this Court.
    Duval County

    Intervest Construction v. General Fidelity Insurance Co.

    SC11-2320

    View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

    Approx. 10:30
    The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has asked this Court to rule on the scope of Florida law as it relates to a dispute over a general liability insurance policy. The issue arose after Intervest Construction and General Fidelity, its insurer, agreed to settle a lawsuit brought by an injured homeowner for $1.6 million. An insurer for a subcontractor paid $1 million and Intervest and General Fidelity each paid $300,000. Intervest and its insurer then sued each other, seeking to recover what they had paid into the settlement. The federal trial judge ruled for General Fidelity. Intervest appealed to the 11th Circuit.
    Duval County

     

    Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments

    Friday, May 11, 2012

    Arrive early. Times & order of appearance are tentative and subject to change with no notice. Cases may be postponed due to exigent circumstances.

    Case

     Time

    Facts & Issues

    Place of Origin

    No cases scheduled